A couple of weeks ago, I had the opportunity to speak with Evan Lockridge, host of the Lockridge Report on Sirius Radio 106, about the recent Highway Funding Bill and regulations related to the implementation of electronic on-board recorders (EOBRs). Evan and I spoke with his listeners about the future of EOBRs, technical challenges faced when transitioning from paper logs to EOBRs and hours of service (HOS) compliance, among other topics. Here are some of the highlights from our conversation:
The use of electronic on-board recorders (EOBRs) has grown significantly in the past few years. They have proven to be very effective tools for hours of service (HOS) compliance management. Carriers using EOBRs have realized superior ratings for HOS compliance in the Compliance Safety Accountability (CSA) program’s safety measure system. There are, however, some naysayers and skeptics that based on misperceptions have argued against the use of EOBRs. The actual experience of the industry, though, suggests that these are just “EOBR myths” and looking at EOBR related facts and industry’s experience (outlined below) clearly demonstrate the usefulness of these systems.
On September 29, 2010, Senators Mark Pryor (D-AR) and Lamar Alexander (R-TN) introduced legislation, Senate Bill S.3884, that would require the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) to issue a mandate for motor carriers to use electronic on-board recorders (EOBRs) to log truck driver hours electronically. This bill is being advocated by a coalition of motor carriers and others that believe transportation logistics will result in improved safety performance through fewer driver fatigue-related accidents. The mandate will ensure all motor carriers and drivers follow the same rules.